Friday, September 16, 2011

Western Treatment Plant

It's a long way to Werribee from home for a day trip, but the reports from the Western Treatment Plant have been very good lately so it was time for a visit.

I had barely turned on my camera when I was greeted by 4 Black Shouldered Kites all looking well fed, and a Swamp Harrier also looking in good nic. A photographer had taken up postition in the exact spot where I wanted to try and get some photos of crakes or bitterns so I decided not to disturb him and leave the T-section and head over to the Western Lagoon.

A Brown Falcon was in its usual spot on the fence post, another Swamp Harrier cruised by, 2 Sea Eagle circled the sky, and a Gull-billed Tern flew by for a look (a first for me).

In an adjacent pond I spotted a Common Greenshank feeding on its own, and there were several Little and Great Egrets over on the Spit.

At the birdhide, I could see some Red-necked Stints and Curlew Sandpipers far offshore which flew off as the tide came in. There were lots of White-fronted Chats (everywhere), White-browed Scrubwrens, Silvereyes, and Fairywrens around the Hide. In a pond not far away an Australian Spotted Crake made a brief appearance before retreating for cover. A Brown Snake warmed itself on the banks of Lake Borrie and allowed me to get quite close before sliding away into the reeds.

Time to go before the traffic builds up and the Westgate becomes a traffic jam, but Paradise Rd on the way out always provides some good observations. More Little Egrets, Red-necked Avocets, Black-winged Stilts, and sone Short-tailed Sandpipers were present and as I departed the Western Treatment Plant a pair of Brown Falcons squawked to say goodbye.

A thoroughly enjoyable visit.

Gull-billed Tern

Little Egret

Curlew Sandpiper

Common Greenshank

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